Spinach & Labneh Dip
Booranis are a variety of yoghurt-based dishes that are served as sides in Iran. They are cousins of mutabal, where yoghurt is used instead of tahini. You can use any kind of green or vegetable instead of the spinach.
Preparation time: 25 minutes
Cooking time: 15 minutes
2 tbsp sunflower oil
2 small shallots, finely chopped
1 onion, thinly sliced (optional)
300g/101⁄2oz spinach leaves
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
200ml/7fl oz/heaped 3⁄4 cup Greek yogurt
a squeeze of lemon juice
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
warm Thin Flatbread to serve
1 Heat half the oil in a heavy-based frying pan over a medium heat. Add the shallots and fry for 8–10 minutes until soft and lightly golden. Transfer to a plate and set aside. Add the remaining oil to the pan and cook the sliced onion, if using, until golden and crispy. Set aside.
2 Meanwhile, put the spinach in a large saucepan and pour in 1l/ 35fl oz/4 cups boiling water. Cover and cook over a high heat for 1–2 minutes until it wilts. Rinse under cold running water, then drain well and squeeze firmly with the back of a spoon to extract as much liquid as you can.
3 Chop the spinach finely and add to the shallots. Add the spices and garlic and season to taste with salt and pepper. Mix well and return the pan to a medium heat. Stir well, cooking for a further 2 minutes, then remove from the heat and leave to cool.
4 Once the spinach mixture has cooled, transfer to a serving dish and mix in the yogurt. Add a squeeze of lemon juice, then taste and adjust the seasoning, if necessary. Put in the fridge for 1 hour to chill. Sprinkle with caramelized onion, if using. Serve extremely cold with warm Thin Flatbread.